12/23/2013 - One of NPR's most popular holiday specials returns with new talent and old friends. Malian singer Abdoulaye Diabate joins The Paul Winter Consort with Paul McCandless, the Drummers of The Fores of Nature, Gospel vocalist Theresa Thomason, and the historic reassembly of the Paul Winter Sextet in the World's Largest Gothic Cathedral -- New York's Cathedral of St. John the Divine. WNYC'S John Schaefer hosts this NPR holiday broadcast favorite.
The Winter Solstice Celebration is a contemporary take on ancient solstice rituals, when people came together during the longest night of the year to celebrate the return of the sun, as the Earth begins its rotational cycle back towards summer. Now in its 33rd year, the performance at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, the world's largest cathedral, is New York's favorite holiday alternative to The Nutcracker and Radio City Christmas.
The Consort musicians: Paul Winter, soprano sax; Paul McCandless, oboe and English horn; Eugene Friesen, cello; Paul Sullivan, keyboards; Jamey Haddad, drums; Eliot Wadopian, bass; and Tim Brumfield, pipe organ. The Sextet musicians: Paul Winter, alto sax; Warren Bernhardt, piano; Cecil McBee, bass; Marvin Stamm, trumpet; and Howard Johnson, baritone sax.